Monday, July 7, 2008

A bridge too dark

(Farm Forum meeting at Wesleyan.)

I moved from teaching my boys to ride on two wheels, to the Farm Forum at Wesleyan (the lemonade, farm cheese and native berries were wonderful - John Friedlander has agreed to blog about the content of the meeting shortly), to a neighborhood pot luck, back home with the Common Council meeting on TV.

If you didn't watch, the Council voted to fund the design of a lighting scheme for the Arrigoni Bridge. For the record, I'm all for a lit bridge, but I have to agree with Bauer, Roberts and Loffredo that the timing might not be right for illuminating the lovely vintage design of the Portland to Middletown span. Those in favor argued that the lighted structure will draw visitors to town. Councilman Streeto was more correct in noting that lighting the bridge would create an icon. It would be the only lit Connecticut River bridge in the four states it flows through. It would become a brand for Middletown. But I don't think anyone would be traveling here to see the lights on the bridge.

Many of the resolutions passed unanimously tonight. The Council now is in the middle of a debate on whether to accept the recommendations of the committee which has revised the charter, or to add an amendment to change the suggestion of the committee to extend the term of mayor to four years from two. The council voted to amend the charter revisions by saying that the mayor's term will remain at two years. The revised charter will come up for a public vote in referendum.

Check the Hartford Courant this morning for details on wage and position negotiations between the city, the Council and the Fire Department.


Anonymous said...

I'm was dumb-founded listening to Council members state, with all seriousness, that people would travel to Middletown to see lights on the bridge. They've got to be kidding.

Although it might very well be pretty, is this really the time to spend $$$ on non-functional lights, lights that will continue to cost the town every second that they remain lit? Absolutely not.

joseph getter said...

I'm concerned that bridge lighting will create more light pollution. This ruins people's view of stars in the night sky, and can also affect birds and other aspects of the ecosystem.

By far the worst light pollution in the Middletown area is the light emitting from Palmer Field. When a night game is on, the glare can be seen for miles. Therefore, I feel Middletown does not have a good track record on dealing with this problem.

I'd like for citizens and officials of Middletown to become more aware of the problems caused by light pollution. It is something that can be avoided through good lighting design.

For more info, have a look at:

- joseph getter

Anonymous said...

I think the movies at WesU and Destinta, Kidcity, Harborpark ,which, as has been noted, is in need of a management overhaul, the multitude of average restaurants and the upcoming Road Race are far more important to drawing people to Middletown than the albeit iconic Arrigoni Bridge, with or without lights.

If those antique houses in the South End were tenanted by antique dealers it would vastly improve the lacking-retail-diversity that currently pervades Main Street....